It’s been a decade now since the Chinese government has persuaded the buyers and manufacturers into the electric vehicle market with the use of subsidies and other incentives.
The International Energy Agency says China buys more than half of the world's new electric cars.
Now, the government wants to transfer this burden onto manufacturers, through a new "cap and trade" system and rules that make it harder to build a factory to make combustion-engine cars. The rules were believed to have come into force on 1 January this year.
China is known to be the biggest manufacturer and the biggest market for cars globally. But it is observed that after two decades of rapid expansion, sales fell in 2018 by 6% to 22.7 million units.
Recent figures show that New Energy Vehicles (NEVs) - a category which takes into account the electric and hybrid models - has defied that trend, growing substantially over the past year.
The China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM) says 601,000 NEVs were sold in the first three quarters of 2018, which suggests that they still account only for a small fragment of the market.
China has been ardently pursuing NEVs, both to curb air pollution and to develop a strong industry. The Chinese government has had subsidies kept for nearly a decade, and these have been expanded by subsidies from regional governments.
In some cities, public transport has also led the way.
Shenzhen's fleet of 16,000 buses is now 100% electric and its fleet of taxis is almost totally run by electricity too.
Many global manufacturers are already in the Chinese NEV market, mostly through joint-venture arrangements, including Nissan, Toyota, VW, BMW, and Volvo.
GM says it's on track to deliver 10 NEV models by the year 2020 and plans to double that number over the following three years.
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